UPDATE: This message was originally posted for our customers on the Geocortex Support Center on October 6, 2008 and is posted here for folks who don't have access to the Geocortex Support Center. Also, here's the link to the Geocortex Essentials: The Road Ahead webinar.

I’m posting to provide some insight into current and upcoming Geocortex Essentials development, as it relates to ESRI’s new and emerging developer APIs.

It is clear to us that these APIs will have an integral role to play (alongside Web ADF) for many customers in the years to come and so we are actively engineering Geocortex Essentials 2.0 to encompass these developer technologies.

Agnostic support and integration for various ESRI developer technologies (as they come into existence) has always been part of the long-term vision for Geocortex Essentials and so our work has always been designed to be exposed in an agnostic way at some point in the future. With the intense demand for Web ADF features and the absence of other APIs, Geocortex Essentials development has been focused on the Web ADF realm for the 1.x product generation, while ensuring we we could make the core elements generic once warranted. And that’s what we’re doing right now.

We’re currently working on a Geocortex Essentials REST API to initially expose search, reporting, data linking and printing via a RESTful interface. This functionality can then be leveraged by either Javascript or Flex API applications—or any other application that connects RESTfully to our API. We decided to expose these particular core elements because they’re needed at the heart of many real-world ArcGIS Server implementations. Let us know if other features are a priority to your organization.

Before long, we’ll also get behind one or more lightweight viewer APIs by developing software to streamline and enhance the development and management of applications built on them. While we’re working with each and may provide sample Javascript and Flex API template applications on which to base development, we have yet to “pick a pony” regarding technological emphasis on the lightweight viewer/application development side. We don’t think all the information is available yet to ensure the correct decision, and we’re confident our customers won’t want us to risk going down the wrong path by making a premature choice.

We’re anticipating a Q1 2009 release of version 2.0. Finally, because Geocortex Essentials is about success with ArcGIS Server, everything we’re talking about here will be delivered to you as part of regular product updates.